Comfort. Energy Expenses. Safety. Value

What do you do when you prepare for a vacation? You pack, make arrangements for your pets, and put gas in the car — but do you also adjust your thermostat settings?

Setting the thermostat before a vacation can help you save money on energy bills, reduce your carbon footprint, and extend your HVAC unit’s lifespan.If you’ve never changed your thermostat when going on vacation, this guide is for you. Below, you’ll learn some tips on how to set your thermostat correctly before leaving.

Consider the Time of Year

The temperature at which you set your thermostat varies depending on when you’re leaving and how long you plan to be out of town. Here are some fundamental guidelines to keep in mind:

For a Summer Vacation

It might be tempting to turn the air conditioner off before you head out on a summer vacation to save money. However, if you do this, you’ll also come home to a hot and humid house — which is not ideal when you’re exhausted from traveling and just want to relax.

Keep in mind, too, that you’ll use a lot of energy to bring the temperature of your house back to normal.A good compromise is to raise the temperature by about five degrees. For example, if you typically keep your thermostat set at 75 degrees during the summer, raise it to 80 when you leave.

Raising your thermostat by this amount will help you save money on energy bills, but it won’t be too hot when you return, either.

For a Winter Vacation

If you’re leaving for a winter vacation, you’ll want to take the opposite approach. Lower the temperature by about five degrees. For example, you might drop it from 65 degrees to 60.

You have a bit more wiggle room in the winter and can get away with reducing the temperature a little more. If you decrease it too much, though, you could end up with a frozen pipe — or an exhausted furnace when you get home and try to warm it back up.

For an Extended Vacation

If you’re going away for a couple of days, you likely don’t have to worry too much about adjusting your thermostat more than a few degrees. What if you plan to leave for several weeks or months, though?

Check the weather forecast before you leave. Doing so will tell you roughly what the temperature will be during your trip.

Knowing the weather predictions will help you avoid unpleasant surprises, such as frozen pipes in the winter (from turning the thermostat down too low) or an extra-humid house with a mold problem in the summer (from turning the thermostat up too high).

Bonus Tips

Whether you’re preparing to travel in the winter, summer, or anytime in between, these additional tips can help you ensure you come home to a comfortable home and reasonable utility bills.

Consider Pets and Sitters

If you’re leaving your pets behind with a sitter — or having someone coming to stay in your house while you’re gone — avoid turning the thermostat up too high or low. Let them know how to adjust the temperature so they can stay comfortable as well.

Close Curtains and Blinds

Make sure all the curtains and blinds are closed before you head out on your vacation. Closing curtains and blinds will help you maintain consistent temperatures and reduce the amount of work your HVAC unit has to do.

Schedule Maintenance

Consider scheduling your annual HVAC unit maintenance a few weeks before your trip. If there are any issues causing it to run less efficiently, you’ll have time to get them fixed in advance.

Let the Experts at C&M Heating and Cooling Help You with Your AC

Whether you’re leaving for a summer, winter, or extended vacation, setting the thermostat will help you avoid coming home to an uncomfortable house (or a massive energy bill).

Keep the tips mentioned above in mind so you can set your thermostat correctly before your next trip.

If you need additional help repairing your HVAC unit, C&M Heating and Cooling is here for you. We have over 40 years of experience with Nashville AC repair, and we’re happy to answer all your questions.

Contact us today to schedule an appointment.